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You Break It, You Buy It

You Break It, You Buy It

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Published by Joseph Winston
Paul has harsh words for those people in any age that want to change the Gospel in any way, shape, or form. There is a reason for this. Call into question the core idea and then everything else is also open for revision. The Good News is that everything has already been done.
Paul has harsh words for those people in any age that want to change the Gospel in any way, shape, or form. There is a reason for this. Call into question the core idea and then everything else is also open for revision. The Good News is that everything has already been done.

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Published by: Joseph Winston on Jun 06, 2010
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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06/06/2010

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You Break It, You Buy It
The Rev. Joseph WinstonJune 6, 2010
Grace and peace are gifts for you from God, the Father of our Lord JesusChrist.
1
Taking a child into a fancy clothing store must be one of the worst nightmaresthat any parent might have to face. Dirty hands that just were spotlessly cleanmoments before permanently stain a frilly white dress hanging ever so nicely onthe rack. It goes without saying, that the salesperson notices the whole incident,walks up to you, and then speaks the phrase parents’ dread. “It is yours now.”After the sale is finished, you now are the proud owner of a stained outfit that doesnot fit anyone you know.Another reoccurring fear for parents involves little boys and delicate glass.Before entering the store, you constantly remind them that they must keep theirhands in their pockets at all times while you find a special gift for a dear friend.You take your eye off them for just an instant and then you hear it, the soft sound
1
Romans 1:7, 1 Corinthians 1:3, 2 Corinthians 1:2, Galatians 1:3, Ephesians 1:2, Philippians1:2, 2 Thessalonians 1:2, Philemon 1:3.
1
 
of crystal shattering into a million little pieces. The shop owner who has beenhelping you whispers those words you first saw on the sign. “Not responsiblefor unattended children. You break it, you own it.” By the time you pay for thecompletely destroyed item there are only a few dollars left for the gift you plannedto purchase.Breaking merchandise is not limited to children. Teenagers get in on the actalso. A little horseplay in a grocery store quickly turns into a disaster as a nicelystacked display tumbles to the ground from a blow given by a wayward shoppingcart. You had better see what you can make with a bushel of bruised fruit. Adultsare not exempt either. Snapping a fishing pole after vigorously flexing it to seehow well it performs means that you now own both partsWidening the circle even more and you soon see the same pattern of ruiningsomething and then being responsible for what you have done in other parts of life. Driving without insurance is a costly mistake to make if an accident happens.Corporations of all sizes end up in court over the results of bad designs. Whenthe Good News that a person is justified not by the works of the law but throughfaith in Jesus Christ is changed in any way, shape, or form, the Gospel becomescompletely useless (Galatians 2:16, 2:21).During Paul’s life, the primary issue of contention revolved around the needfor followers of Christ to also be Jews. This one item of disagreement betweenthe groups that favored Christians to first become Jews and those who did nothas a large number of practical implications. In the house, it meant the type of food on the table, the clothes on your back, the work allowed, what was clean2
 
and what was not, the person who you married, and the ranking of male overfemale. Outside of the family, the instructions continued. It told you how to handlearguments between individuals, damage from livestock, proper punishment forwrongdoing, the rank of people not like you, the support of the poor, the widow,the orphan, and the stranger, and how to determine which circumstances makea person ritually unclean. The life of faith contains its own list that includes theproperceremoniesthatspecificmenmustperform,whohasaccesstothegiftsGodgives, the supervision of what is acceptable and what is not, the duty to uphold theLaw, and the responsibility to keep the covenant between God and man.What is at stake in the discussion is not the
background
of people before theybecome Christians nor is it the
merits
of following to the letter the instructionsgiven to the people of God. Instead, the entire debate hinges on the following idea.“You cannot be a Christian
unless
you do this specific action.” Put more bluntly,“You are not saved
until
this happens.”Paul sees the glaring problem with this line of reasoning. It means that Jesusdid not do enough to wipe out all the marks against you.Think about what this actually implies. If it is really true, then you cannot becertain of what the Bible tells you about Jesus. All those places where Jesus sayseverything is completed (John 19:30), or that He is the way (John 14:6), or eventhough believers die they will live (John 11:25), or today you will be with me inParadise (Luke 23:43), or those who lose their life for Jesus will find it (Matthew10:39; 16:25), or that Jesus came for the sick (Mark 2:17) none of those are quiteright. Remaining unanswered is the pressing issue of something else required of 3

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